Please note: All figures provided in this article are approximate and based off an assumed purchase price of £200,000.
Step 1 – Save, save and save some more.
The average first time buyer will look to save a 10% deposit of the anticipated purchase price of a property. For example, if you were buying at £200,000 you would aim to try and save £20,000.
However, there are government schemes available such as Help to Buy which can help increase your total deposit. More information on the Help to Buy scheme is available here.
Step 2 – Finding a home.
Thankfully there are no costs involved at this stage (unless of course you include the fuel to get from property to property). Finding the right home that ticks all the boxes is arguably one of the hardest things you will have to do when buying your first home. Almost all the time you will have to compromise somewhere however, just remember to look at the things you can change and the things you can’t; hopefully this should make the process a little easier with fewer arguments between yourself and your other half!
Step 3 – Arranging your mortgage.
Once you’ve found your dream home it’s important to revisit your mortgage broker or bank that hopefully you will have made initial enquiries with already. You will then need to pick your mortgage product (of which there are many) and sign up. Your mortgage broker or bank will make you aware of the fees involved in setting up your mortgage; mainly the mortgage arrangement fee which is usually around £1,000 but can be added onto the mortgage amount, the booking fee which is £99 - £250 and the valuation fee which is around £250 however some products may offer free valuations.
Step 4 – Instructing the solicitors.
At the same time as arranging your mortgage you will also need to instruct your chosen solicitors who will carry out the legal work on your purchase. Solicitors fees do vary between firms so it’s important to get a few quotes together first before you give a particular firm the go ahead.
On average you can expect to pay around £800 in solicitors fees plus additional disbursements such as; search fees: £300 - £400, land registry fees: £95, bank transfer fee: £42, SDLT return: £60 and acting for lender fee (if there is a mortgage involved): £60.
You will also need to pay stamp duty tax which, at £200,000, would be £1,500 assuming you don't own any other properties. Stamp duty calculator available here.
Step 5- Moving day.
Once the solicitors have completed their legal work you will be in a position to exchange contracts – this is where the sale becomes legally binding, neither side can pull out, the completion date becomes fixed and you can book removals. If you want to save some money at this stage you may find it’s cheaper to hire a van and rope in some family members to help you move.
Usually completion takes place 1-2 weeks after the exchange of contracts – completion is where you officially take ownership of the property and you can collect keys from the agent.
We hope you have found this article useful and if you would like our help in finding you a property, please click here to register with one of our offices.